Since I looked into the hospital records for the outbreak in China I have struggled with the seemingly variable presentations on record. Why do some people have high fever and others none? In my experience a virus usually has a signature. It can vary person to person, but the general effects are the same.
The National Science Review, published by Oxford Academic, has accepted a manuscript outlining the origin and evolution genomics of the current virus. https://academic.oup.com/nsr/advance-article/doi/10.1093/nsr/nwaa036/5775463?searchresult=1
It appears there are 2 major types of 2019-nCoV infecting humans.
They are the “L” type and the “S” type. The L type was more prevalent in the initial phase, but the S type is the ancestral version (came first). The L has a higher transmission rate than the S, and the L type has acquired a significantly higher number of mutations. It transmits faster and/or replicates faster in human populations, causing it to accumulate more mutations than the S type. It is unknown whether this initial mutation happened in the host animal or in humans.
The guess at when a vaccine might be ready sits at Spring 2021.
Currently it appears that the S type is more prevalent, which means at the moment it is less aggressive than it could be. That said, some patients appear to be infected with both types.
What this means is unclear, but this may contribute to the variability in both varying symptomology and intensity of infection. This in turn requires multiple treatment approaches from the Chinese Medicine perspective.
Genomes are being run from many infections – and this appears to be a rapidly mutating virus giving rise to multiple versions.
Herbal Medicine Update
I have also been looking into what a vaccine might look like in order to understand how to apply herbal medicine in this way.
It is suggested that the spike, the junction that allows the virus to dock into the human cell, would be the place to work in creating a vaccine.
I then looked at research into the previous SARS, which although genetically different appears to dock in the same way.
Previous work confirms current work in China showing that one Chinese herb – Gan Cao – is effective in blocking the docking of the virus on to the human cell. This herb is the base of the herbal formula emerging from China known as “Formula One”.
One of the sites involved in docking is the furin cleavage site. This may be one of the controls of infection, and a few substances – luteolin and quercetin – appear to be furin inhibitors. It is suggested that blocking this would affect the ability of the virus to infect us. The plant Mu Hu Die (Oroxylum) in the Chinese Materia Medica is a potent furin inhibitor.
Given the complexity of this virus, and the likelihood that it will continue to mutate with different strains with different effects, a multi-pronged herbal approach is what I suggest. Recovery period is also unknown – there have been some reports of patients in China dying after “recovering”, recovery in those cases being 3 days of normal temperature and respiration. If you develop pneumonia I would suggest remaining in the hospital as long as possible, and ensuring your lung imaging is clear before you go home. I also heartily suggest a longer-term herbal formula geared towards immunity to ensure repression of the virus.
The Apothecary page has the latest formulas.